The amount of money I spent today registers as a top 10 in my life. Days like these are unavoidable and I always leave them feeling poorer because I am. I’m not an expert negotiator but I also would like to think that I don’t get taken advantage of either. I want to share my experience so you can see what goes through my head and the results I obtain in these particular situations.
Negotiating With Verizon
I’m Verizon’s dream customer if I played by their rules and regulations. I break or lose my phone within the 2 year contract every single time. If you aren’t familar with how the system works, Verizon will sell you a phone at an upgrade price every 2 years. If your phone doesn’t last until the upgrade period, they try to charge you full retail price which is about $500 dollars for outdated phones.
I’m 11 months into my 2 year contract and have 2 cracks that cover about 1/3 of the screen. This is unacceptable to me and I’m not going to pay $500 dollars for a new phone. Even though Evan says that the Iphone is the best phone on the market, I’m not an Apple guy and find the Samsung Galaxy’s able to fit all my needs. I currently have the Galaxy 3 and have been pretty happy.
AT&T will give a Galaxy 4 free to a new customer. This is my starting point in negotiating and what I want. On Saturday, I called the retention department and the rep wouldn’t budge on getting me a new phone. He said I was threatening him and that a Galaxy costs $500 and the only way Verizon makes money is by customers playing out their contracts (this company made 11 billion last year FYI). We weren’t getting anywhere so I tried again with another rep on Monday. The next rep said I could purchase another line, turn my current line into a minimum charge and then get a Galaxy 4 for $100 on the other line. What the hell am I going to do with 2 lines? This once again wasn’t leading anywhere and we were unable to come up with a solution.
Today I called At&t and was prepared to make the switch if I couldn’t get anywhere with Verizon. They offered a plan that was 1 gb of data, unlimited call and text for $60 dollars a month and I would get a new Galaxy 4 for nothing. I was ready to drop Verizon, incur about 200 dollars of termination charges (which I wasn’t going to pay and take a hit on my credit score), and swap to At&t. I called Verizon and asked for retention and got a rep who heard my position and wanted to help me out. I explained what I was prepared to do, he talked to his manager and got me an upgraded price of a Galaxy 4 for $150 dollars with a $50 dollar rebate.
This was a minor victory for me because of my consistent disregard for any contract I sign with Verizon. Verizon offers insurance on the phone for $10 dollars a month. Hypothetically if I took insurance for the 11 months I owned the phone, and then paid the $99 deductible to get a new Galaxy 3, I’d be down 100 bucks and have a lesser phone. What I did was obviously a better play. Now if I was Ck4, I probably would have gotten the newest Iphone, Google Glass, a new Playstation 4, and a lifetime supply of Coors Light but I can only ask for so much.
Buying my Acura 2012 TL
I’ve leased a car for 9 years. At the end of every lease I turn my car in and get a new one. For my 3rd vehicle I said enough is enough. Acura had no TL’s to test drive and my TL was better than the 2014 TSX I tested. I had made 35 of my 36 payments and decided to purchase the car.
I walked into the dealership already filling out the credit app previously and we went through the basic paper work. The salesman gave the paperwork to his boss and told me he was with another customer and he would get to me shortly. I sat there for 45 minutes which was making me quite unhappy.
After being in the dealership for 80 minutes from start to finish, I went into the room with the big boss. I’ve been through the process before of running through paperwork and I wanted to make sure all the numbers were clear as day. My credit score is above 800, even though I have no money, so I was approved of a loan at 2.5%. With some basic research on the web, this rate seemed competitive.
The buy out of the vehicle was $23,500. Optional expenses include a warranty and GAP insurance, and mandatory expenses were sales tax as well as some menial registration fees that total about 100 bucks. I went with the 100k warranty for $2,500 and passed on the GAP. Is $2,500 for a 100k warranty a good deal? Who the fuck knows. If the car doesn’t break over the next 4 years it’s a waste of money. How likely is that to happen? Who the fuck knows. I know a transmission will cost more than $2,500.
He runs the papers through some old ass printer and I sign a bunch of papers. I put $1,700 down to cover some title and tags (at least that’s what I’m told) and this also allowed me to get a 2.5% rate (again who the hell knows). My payment gets bundled with the warranty and I walk away having a payment that is 30 dollars less than what I’m paying now for the next 5 years. The blue book on the car is around $21.000 which puts me underwater a couple of k. For being 6k miles over the allotted 36,000 at the end of the lease ($1,200 cost), I don’t think it’s too bad.
New Club Shoes
I’ve never purchased a nice pair of shoes. I’ve had suit and dress shoes but nothing that I felt was “cool” for the club. After many years of going to clubs, I finally decided to purchase a pair of shoes that will make me feel normal. To describe the shoes that I used to wear to clubs would be like Dockers that have laces. They are fine for sales trips and an alternative to sneakers but no one would ever comment, “nice shoes”.
I went to the mall and had an idea of what I was looking for. Black or brown are standard with jeans and I was looking for something with no shoe laces. I came across the pair pictured for 100 bucks and figured I’d make the investment. They fit well and looked as normal as I could think normal looks. I’m not into fashion so I have no idea what brands are popular or what style is in. All I know is that I’ll be let into the club with these and they look decent with jeans. It’s worth it to spend money on these types of shoes because you only need 1 pair. I wish I would have done so 10 years ago. I’m curious if anyone reads this could point out a better selection. The purple shirt has never been worn by me before in public.